Raymond Czaja Jr., Robert Holmberg, Emmanuelle Pales Espinosa, Daniel Hennen, Robert Cerrato, Kamazima Lwiza, Jennifer O’Dwyer, Brian Beal, Kassandra Root, Hannah Zuklie, Bassem Allam.

2023. Behavioral and physiological effects of ocean acidification and warming on larvae of a continental shelf bivalve, Marine Pollution Bulletin 192, 115048.

The negative impacts of ocean warming and acidification on bivalve fisheries are well documented but few studies investigate parameters relevant to energy budgets and larval dispersal. This study used laboratory experiments to assess developmental, physiological and behavioral responses to projected climate change scenarios using larval Atlantic surfclams Spisula solidissima solidissima, found in northwest Atlantic Ocean continental shelf waters. Ocean warming increased feeding, scope for growth, and biomineralization, but decreased swimming speed and pelagic larval duration. Ocean acidification increased respiration but reduced immune performance and biomineralization. Growth increased under ocean warming only, but decreased under combined ocean warming and acidification. These results suggest that ocean warming increases metabolic activity and affects larval behavior, while ocean acidification negatively impacts development and physiology. Additionally, principal component analysis demonstrated that growth and biomineralization showed similar response profiles, but inverse response profiles to respiration and swimming speed, suggesting alterations in energy allocation under climate change.

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